WASHINGTON — Men and transgender women who have sex with men who took Truvada as pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) four or more days a week were 100 percent protected against HIV in a recent study, AIDSmeds reports. However, participants actually took Truvada that frequently just 33 percent of the time during the 72-week trial, and overall adherence declined throughout the study.
Daily adherence to Truvada was detected just 12 percent of the time. When considering all participants who received Truvada, regardless of their adherence, the study showed that PrEP lowered the risk of acquiring HIV by about half, the HIV care journal reports.
Uptake of Truvada was high at 76 percent, and those at higher risk of HIV were more likely to take the drug. However, in an accompanying editorial in the Lancet, Dr. Raphael J. Landovitz of the UCLA Center for Clinical AIDS Research and Education at the David Geffen School of Medicine at the University of California, Los Angeles, asked if such uptake was high enough, considering all the participants had come from previous clinical trials of PrEP, making them more likely to take the drug than the average person at risk or HIV, the AIDS MEDS article said.
One study participant who took Truvada contracted HIV and developed resistance to the drug.
Publishing their findings in the Lancet Infectious Diseases, researchers from the open-label extension phase of the iPrEx study (iPrEx OLE) enrolled 1,603 participants from three previous PrEP studies and offered them the chance to take daily Truvada if they were HIV negative. Participants were enrolled between June 2011 and June 2012. The study results were also presented at the 20th International AIDS Conference (AIDS 2014) in Melbourne, Australia.